Beauty in the unexpected (Nicaragua Part Uno)

There, as I stood at the bottom and looked up at the mountain I just climbed, I knew that this week was going to be one of the best weeks of my life and I was ready for God to use me and teach me whatever He had prepared for me. I wanted to drink in every detail of the trip. I wanted to be still and listen. But most of all, I wanted to love those around me well. But, I never expected to fall in love with the precious people of Nicaragua the way that I did. And it only took one little girl to change it all...

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All that is Good

I pray that anyone who is searching for true rest, will find it in a Father who gives all that is good and perfect. I pray that these prints will serve as a reminder to your heart each day. Wherever they may find their home-on your mantle, kitchen counter, or in your little girls room-I hope that you see these truths and are reminded that simpler really is sweeter. 

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When God gives you rest...

The quiet hush of the busy world around us. The singing birds in the fresh summer breeze. The steady beat of the horse running in the field behind me. It was the symphony of the world around me, and it whispered to my soul. 

It's always there if we are willing to listen. It's always there if you're willing to just be still. Something my soul has needed. Rest. It finds it's way deep into your soul like a salve to deep-old wounds. It whispers and calms, and always tells you it's going to be alright. 

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When the light reveals your dark spots.

It’s hard when the light reveals my dark spots.

I wrote these words in my journal about 4 years ago. A season of life that seems a lifetime ago, but a simple truth that still feels so real. 

The thing about light that can seem so hard is that is reveals things that we never wanted to see-things we never wanted others to see. It exposes the sin that we have hidden in the crevices of our heart. But even though light exposes those dark spots, it also directs and reveals color. Isn't that such a sweet whisper to your soul right now?

Even though we have dark spots, His light vanquishes the shadows of our life, and it reveals the color-the beauty. Sweet friend, it opens a place for us to abide and know Him intimately. 

When we walk in the way of the world, we have no eternal value and are not able to keep His commands, but when we abide in His light -His truth- we too can be the light! Oh my soul needed to be reminded of this today. 

In order for the love + light of God to be perfected in us, we must walk as Jesus walked.

Whew. Did you get that one? We must choose be the salt + light. To look different than those around us, we must live different than those around us. We must live like Jesus lived!

But, if I am being completely honest with myself-with you..my feet are usually focused on myself and what will benefit me. I so selfishly walk in the way of the world because of the fear of rejection. The fear of dreams being revealed and shattered. 

Oh but Sweet sister, if I walk in the way of the WORD -if you do too- our feet will be prepared for the calling ahead of us. That calling that somehow seems bigger than you. Yeah, that calling that is revealed by the light of God-of His WORD. 

Sure, we may be rejected, but the beauty in that is we have a Father who was rejected, beaten, + mocked in our place and He will never leave our side. In His presence -His light- is great joy. A joy that can only be made complete in Him, by adding in His light and trusting His plans. 

So let the light reveal your dark spots. Let His light guide your path to that calling that somehow seems bigger than you, and JUST TRUST.

Be Brave Little One

My prayer for each of these orders is that each little girl's (or adult's) room that these paintings find themselves in, they will be a catalyst for dreams and bravery. That girls, young and old, will be reminded of their beauty and their bravery. We were all created with purpose-painted and designed for a specific calling. If we look to Christ and learn to be brave and trust, he will fulfill our dreams and use us for great purpose. 

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Here I am, Send Me.

I have been a college graduate for almost two years now! What?  The Lord has been working in and through my life in so many ways. I share many of them with you here, and my desire is that my ministry here will encourage women to seek Christ and foster creativity. 

As you know, I began this year with a blog post about "loving beyond myself" (If you haven't read it, you can check it out here). My prayer has been that I would learn to love past my insecurities, break down my walls, and love beyond myself. I kicked off my mission by giving all of my birthday funds to the Tim Tebow Foundation. 

You guys are amazing, and I continue to be in awe of the way God works in my life. Though we did not meet my goal of $500, we were just $100 shy. Thank you so much for helping me in kicking off the year in loving beyond myself. 

After sending the money to TTF, the month of February began to pass and I continued to pray for ways that the Lord would reveal what  "loving beyond myself" would continue to mean throughout the year. Through this, I am so excited to announce that God has given me the opportunity to go to Nicaragua. 

I will be departing for the mission trip June 16th, and I couldn't be more excited for the ways that the Lord will use the team and I, and the things He will continue to whisper to my heart along this journey. To make this trip a reality, I still need to raise a small portion. For the month of March, everything ordered through my online shop will go directly to benefit my trip to Nicaragua. 

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To shop for a customized script art, check out the online shop today! I am so excited about the opportunity to paint a piece for you and pray over you as I prepare your piece to be sent out. To place your order,  click here! You can even purchase from my new series #bebravelittleone!

Aside from your monetary support by purchasing from my online shop, I ask that you continue to pray for this trip and the team that I will be joining in Nicaragua. Please pray that we can truly be the hands and feet of Jesus. And, to hear more about the months leading up to the trip, the time spent in Nicaragua, and the things God teaches me through this mission trip, you can continue to check back here!

Thank you so much for joining me on this crazy journey that God continues to set my feet upon!

Stop Surviving & Start Thriving!

I never realized when I picked up that little blue book with that cute little HGTV couple on the cover, that my heart would need it the way it did. The reminder that surviving isn't just thriving. 

Because if surviving is what life is all about, then I want out!

I think that's what America just loves about this couple...their fun loving, quirky, and quiet little life on the farm. Their life that teaches you to slow down and start thriving-start blooming where you are planted. It's not their words, it's their actions that speak the loudest. 

Or maybe what my heart really needed to hear was to just stop planning. Maybe just to sit back and enjoy the ride. Like Williams says to Randall on This Is Us, "Roll down the window, turn up the music, and grow out your fro..."

So maybe I won't grow a fro, but that's essentially it isn't? To let everything go and just live-just trust. To stop surviving and start thriving. Or maybe what I really needed to hear was that the world needs more of my God whispered dreams-for me to open up my journal and share them with the world. My painting, my heart for community, for adoption + orphans. 

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Maybe the world needs a little more of your dreams too. 

So what are we waiting for? Open up your journal and share it with the world. 

STOP SURVIVING AND START THRIVING!